Louise Thompson has shared her top tips for flying long-haul with a toddler.
The former Made In Chelsea star, 33, took to social media to share her savvy travel trips with her 1.4million followers as she returned home from a family holiday to St Lucia.
The star detailed how she and fiancé Ryan Libbey had survived the nine hour flight with their 18 month old son, Leo.
In a lengthy Instagram post, Louise said her top tips were as follows: "1. We booked a flight for 10am – this was the sweet spot!
2. We were VERY organised the night before – leaving nothing left to pack in the morning. We got him up at 6am on the day of travel and headed straight to the airport. We didn’t let him sleep in the car or in the pram. NO SLEEPING UNTIL BOARDING THE FLIGHT is crucial.
3. We ran him around the airport lots, including on travelators (sometimes walking backwards), up and down stairs, and we showed him lots of curious new things
4. We fed him 9 oz milk during take-off to help avoid painful popping ears
5. WE 100% GAVE IN TO USING THE DUMMY, NEEDS. MUST. AND I don’t feel remotely guilty about it.
6. We booked seats at the front of our section giving us access to the basinets. They strap a special seat to the table.
7. We took an old XL Muslin with a hole in it to allow him to breathe (basic etiquette)
8. We took a gamble and booked two isle seats with a spare seat in the middle. It paid off on the way out! MAJOR WIN!
9. We brought our baby carrier on the flight so he had multiple sleeping options. It was also helpful for when he had wriggly moments and wouldn’t sit still. I must have done 1000x squats.
10. We made a big deal out of everything. EVERYTHING. Even opening a packet of pretzels we made him do himself, and cheered him on which killed about 20 minutes, then he got to enjoy the flavour. Followed by the delightful flavour of aeroplane food. The joy of firsts. We also packed some pouches for him to munch on for a little familiarity and to fill him up so he slept better. We packed many bottles of water and milk. We were allowed to take a flask with boiling water through to add to some of his formula powder."
11. I used a gazillion zip lock bags with different things in them jumbled together:
– Little light up toys
– Fun rings and puppets
– Sellotape + Post it notes
– An iPad for drawing on and playing games (They had some children’s games on the tv screen but Leo was more interested in moving the screen around and putting it back between the seats)
– Spinny toys
– A BRAND NEW TOY LAPTOP that he unboxed for the first time on the flight.
"Oh and a bonus point, I cut up lots of his favourite things to eat and put them into Tupperware. I tried to limit HOW much fruit he had on the flight because I didn’t want him bouncing off the walls from too much sugar!
She went on to confess she didn't use Calpol to help the little one sleep, as she had forgotten about the oldest trick in the book.
"We didn’t end up using Calpol. I actually FORGOT about the Calpol until we arrived and was like OMG I can’t believe we didn’t use it."
In summary, Louise felt the trip was a success.
"I guess you could say it went pretty well," she said. "We even survived the 3 hour car journey from the airport the the villa. I think it was 15+ hours door to door. Not too shabby for a first attempt."
Not too shabby at all!
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